He found her in the side garden, He had not even
bothered to go into the house, for without thought he was
certain she would be here. He had ridden into the barn tot,
where an old negro man, regarding the mare's condition,
exclaimed, "Lord God, Mister Perse, you ain't gone and
wind-broke her 1"
" No," Mr. Munn said shortly, and swung down from the
saddle and tossed the reins to the negro. " Take care of her,"
he ordered, and started to walk rapidly across the lot toward
the wide and heavily shaded lawn. He walked directly
across the lawn, and around the house to the side garden.
May, apparently, did not hear his coming when he turned
the corner of the house and walked toward her, for grass had
long ago crept over and padded the gravel of the path; and so
he saw her in the posture and stillness that must belong to
her when she was alone. He thought, during the instant or
two before she was aware of his presence, that that was the
way she looked when she was alone, for it had become a
habit of his mind to try to picture her as she must be in
solitude, or to seize on such glimpses as this, as though these
images could give him a clue to what she truly was in herself,
in her essence. For he felt that when he was with her she
was not herself, not wholly; his presence, or the presence of
anyone, must, like a single drop of some stain, tincture the
crystal liquid that was absolutely herself. She is alone, he
thought, and moved rapidly toward her, knowing that the
instant she turned and raised her eyes she would not be
purely herself but would be coloured by him.
** Hello," he said, and approached and kissed her.
** You're early, aren't you?" she asked,* smiling.
"Yes/*he answered. "I wanted to come home and tell you
tmaetasng." He felt convinced, as the words left his mouth,
dE hk own stupidity. He had not come home for that. He
M eot&e home, putting his mare in a lather, not because
he mated to tell her that he was a member of the board, but
taauie h*ar words or expression, or even her mere presence,
might Wp explain himself to himself. Obscurely, he felt that